As a company, we have decided to adopt company values for the first time; however, instead of rolling out five or ten values at one go, we are adopting them one-by-one. There are two reasons for this.
First, we want to really devote ourselves to embedding each value into the company culture so that it is truly engrained into everything we do, from hiring to how we interact with our clients to how we decide between new service offerings. Most companies roll out several values at one time, however from discussions I have had with peers, I have seen that your list of values can easily become a game of having employees memorise all the values rather than truly internalising them in everything they do. We may feel after rolling out a certain number of values, whether it be four or seven or 15, that beyond a certain point it will be too challenging to ensure adherence to all of them after which we may decide to not roll out any more.
Second, the value we are rolling out today (see below) felt to me as the one value I was most passionate about at this moment. That is not to say that there aren’t other values that will be more core to our company culture, however if we were to roll out multiple values, I fear that I would instinctively know how to evangelise some of them into the company’s processes, but then feel obliged to somehow find places to embed the rest of the values. By going one-by-one, each value we decide to adopt will get undivided attention when we introduce it to the company and find ways to embed it into everything we do.
With that being said, the first value we are rolling out today for our company is Accountability. As already mentioned, this value is one I am personally passionate about, and I won’t shy away from acknowledging that to some extent company values flow from the core beliefs of a company’s founder(s).
Let me tell you about what accountability not only means to me, but to us at Quantanite.
Accountability centres around personal responsibility and reliability. To be known as an accountable colleague means that when we set a task or a due date for ourselves, others listening can be sure that we will deliver as we have promised. This is a given regardless of if the deliverable was mentioned in passing or noted in meeting minutes, and nobody needs to reconfirm whether we meant what we committed to. Accountability is about honouring our commitments and removing the unnecessary stress from co-workers or other stakeholders that our deliverable may be late, which could jeopardise our colleagues’ work. Setting expectations accurately in regards to what and when we will deliver is a key quality of an accountable professional.
Accountability also means taking ownership in one’s work. If someone agrees to deliver a certain piece of work, they should feel that being late or delivering below par means that they have reduced the value of their own work compared to if it had been delivered as promised.
To be known as accountable is one of the most valuable characteristics or qualities of a personal brand anyone could have in the professional world. Most managers would place accountability at the top of their list of desired personal qualities they would look for in new team members. Being truly accountable is unfortunately quite rare but sought after in the workplace, possibly even more so than some academic or technical skills, which can be taught.
We are accountable to all stakeholders: to our clients, to the colleagues we manage, to our peers, and to our managers. It is important to us all individually to have others see us as accountable professionals.
I look forward to working with my colleagues throughout our organisation on adopting this first value and finding innovative ways to embed it into the way we conduct ourselves daily.